Evaluate the impact of the Internet on practices for recruitment and selection employed by firms.
(This sample essay has had paragraph numbers added to aid discussion. Essays would not normally have numbered paragraphs.)
1. The Internet has had a significant impact world-wide on recruitment practices within organisations of all sizes. In the area of selection, advances have been slower, but there are, nevertheless, some interesting on-line selection initiatives. These include automated filtering of applications, initial psychological testing of applicants and networking systems for selecting developing job specifications and for interviewing and selecting candidates. This essay will attempt to describe and evaluate the impact the Internet has had on both these two aspects of human resources management.
2. The Internet is a system of connecting computers around the world. Linked to this is the ‘Intranet’, which is a way organisations can communicate internally. The population connected to the Internet in 1999 totalled some 196 million people, predicted to rise to over 500 million by the end of 2003. By the start of 2000, the daily number of Emails sent exceeded – each day – the number sent in total for the whole of 1990 (Globalisationguide, 2003).
3. The Internet has had a significant impact on the way both firms and job seekers seek each other out. In Britain in 2000, the Chartered Institute of Personnel estimated that 47 per cent of all employers were making use of the Internet for recruitment purposes (Dale, 2003). In the USA the Association of Internet Recruiters estimated that 45 per cent of companies surveyed had filled one in five of their vacancies through on-line recruiting (Charles, 2000). More than 75 per cent of Human Resources personnel in the USA are now making regular use of Internet job boards in addition to traditional recruitment methods of newspaper advertising and links with employment agencies (HR Focus, 2001).
4. The main ways that firms use the Internet include developing their own web sites, making use of recruitment agency websites, or using ‘job boards’: external websites that carry sometimes thousands of vacancies that job seekers can scan. Increasingly, external recruitment agencies are specialising in particular types of niché vacancies, or acting as career managers for job applicants and helping to both place the applicant in the right job and support that person during their career.
5. Job seekers too, use the Internet to contact prospective employers by placing their CVs or work résumés on to websites that employers can scan. A survey in the USA in 1999 suggested that 55 per cent of graduates had posted their résumé on to an online job service, and that three-quarters had used the Internet to search for jobs in specific geographic locations (Monday, Noe & Premeaux, 2002). Some job seekers, with high demand skills, offer their labour in electronic ‘talent auctions’, with job negotiations, once a successful match has been made, facilitated by the Auction House representatives on behalf of the applicants.
6. The main advantages to employers of using the Internet for recruitment purposes are in the speed of operation, breadth of coverage, particularly if recruiting on a world-wide basis, and cost saving that can occur. Electronic advertising can quickly connect with job-seekers in many different places that might not otherwise be contacted by more conventional methods. Small to medium sized enterprises too, find that they can compete effectively electronically with larger companies and can begin to attract high-calibre recruits to their web-sites, which might not otherwise be the case with more traditional methods of recruitment. With regards to cost saving, it has been estimated that expenditure on newspaper advertising and ‘headhunter’ fees dropped in the USA by 20 per cent as Internet expenditure increased (Boehle, 2000). On-line recruiting,...